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ERIC Number: EJ980766
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 32
ISSN: ISSN-1040-0435
People with Profound and Multiple Intellectual Disabilities Using Symbols to Control a Computer: Exploration of User Engagement and Supporter Facilitation
Bunning, Karen; Kwiatkowska, Gosia; Weldin, Nick
Assistive Technology, v24 n4 p259-270 2012
Computer usage features in everyday life for the majority of people in developed countries. Access is a problem for many users with intellectual disability. Action-research was conducted to develop and explore the potential of specially adapted, computer readable symbols for choosing and accessing media on a computer. Five people with profound and multiple intellectual disabilities, aged 15-28 years, took part. The symbols were introduced during computer-based activities across four trials at monthly intervals. Each trial was video-recorded. The vocal, non-vocal, and computer-related aspects of the footage were transcribed into standard orthography. A framework of activity moves based on applied linguistics analysis was used to assess user and supporter engagement. User data were summarised with descriptive statistics. Differences in user-supporter roles during symbol activities were determined by the non-parametric, U Mann-Whitney test. All the users showed some level of basic engagement with the adapted symbols, with certain individuals demonstrating functional usage. Attention levels appeared to increase as the trials progressed. Supporter contributions comprised significant levels of guidance and modelling with the symbols. Tangible symbols to access media on a computer provide some real possibilities for addressing access challenges experienced by this population. Candidacy and the mediating role of supporters require consideration. (Contains 2 tables and 6 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom